Dakota's Best Hot Dog Recipe

The best hot dog I ever ate was made in an old fashioned butcher shop in our town out on the plains of North Dakota.

Growing up, I was surrounded by the German recipes and traditions that were brought to our area by our early immigrants. This is one of those recipes.

It's as close to the original as time and research will allow it to be.

I remember it as being made with a combination of beef and pork, and that's the way I do it now. It is perfectly O.K. to use all of one kind or the other though.


  • 2 lbs lean beef chuck and 3 lbs lean pork shoulder

  • 1 tablespoon onion powder

  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder

  • 1 tablespoon paprika

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 1 tablespoon ground mace

  • 1 tablespoon ground white pepper (can substitute black)

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander

  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground dried marjoram

  • i cup non-fat dried milk powder

  • 2 egg whites

  • 1 teaspoon #1 cure (prague powder or Instacure)

  • 1 cup ice water

  1. Cube the meat, refrigerate it for 30 minutes, then grind it at least twice through the finest plate on your meat grinder. You may find it easier to grind if you chill it between grindings.
  2. Mix all the spices and cure and incorporate them with the egg whites into the ground meat. Allow the mixture to cool in the refrigerator for another 30 minutes, and then grind it one more time through your fine grinding plate.
  3. In small batches, adding the ice water as needed, emulsify the meat mixture in your food processor. Click Here for Emulsifying Directions.
  4. Stuff the emulsified sausage into large sheep casings or small pork casings, and ready them for the meat smoker. Click Here for directions on smoking sausage.
  5. If you use collagen casings, be sure they are the kind made especially to be used in the smoke house.

Traditionally, wieners don't have a heavy smoke flavor. I find using one pan of wood chips and applying the smoke for only the first 60 to 90 minutes of the cooking/curing process is about right.

You can also finish this "best hot dog recipe" by cooking them in simmering (180-200 degree F) water until they reach 152 degrees internally. If you choose this method, add 2 teaspoons of liquid smoke to the meat mixture when you add the rest of the spices.

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